A programmatic intervention to promote entrepreneurial self-efficacy, critical behavior, and technology readiness among underrepresented college students

Germán A. Cadenas, Elizabeth Angélica Cantú, Nathalie Lynn, Tameka Spence, Alissa Ruth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Underrepresented students face challenges in accessing entrepreneurial education and careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. In attempts to address this deficit, a five-week social entrepreneurship program (named Poder) with a focus on technology was implemented at one of the largest community college systems in the U.S. Conceptually, the program curriculum was grounded in Social Cognitive Career Theory and Critical Consciousness, two approaches noted for helping underserved students. In order to evaluate the efficacy of the program, students from diverse backgrounds (n = 106) completed pre- and post-test measures, which included instruments assessing entrepreneurial self-efficacy, entrepreneurial skills, civic participation, critical behavior, technology optimism, and technology innovation. Results from paired samples t-tests and a series of repeated measures mixed-design ANOVAS suggest that students experienced significant increases in all outcome measures, except for civic participation, and effects were not moderated by race/ethnicity, gender, or immigration status. These results suggest that the program, designed with a culturally responsive curriculum, was effective in promoting the career development of culturally diverse and underrepresented students. We discuss conceptual and practical contributions for addressing educational attainment gaps and systemic issues in entrepreneurship and STEM education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number103350
JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
Volume116
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2020

Keywords

  • Community college
  • Critical entrepreneurship
  • Social cognitive career theory
  • STEM education
  • Underrepresented students

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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